Stay hydrated this summer with your food

Fruits and vegetables are packed with lots of water

Beat that summer heat while living in Texas. Did you know there are several fruits and vegetables that are packed with over 90% of water? More water, means less in calories. So, while you are out shopping for groceries this week, be sure to pick up your water friendly fruits and veggies. Add these 5 below to your grocery list and stay hydrated through the summer. And don't forget to make sure to pick up the watermelon, but WITH seeds. There are so many health benefits to watermelon seeds, check them out below.

1) Tomato

2) Lettuce

3) Red Pepper

4) Celery

5) Cucumber

6) Watermelon


Tomato- Between 93-96% water

Tomatoes are the major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K.

Lettuce- 96% water

Romaine lettuce has about 8 calories and 1-2 grams of carbohydrates per cup. Although it's low in fiber, it's high in minerals, such as calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, and potassium. It's naturally low in sodium. Plus, romaine lettuce is packed with vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate.

Calories: 8 calories Fiber: 1 g Total fat: 0.1 g

Red Peppers- 94%water

Serving Size: 1 medium. Calories: 31-37; 169% of the RDA for vitamin C. Red Peppers also contain 3 mg of vitamin B6. Vitamin K1, is a form of vitamin K, known as phylloquinone, K1 is important for blood clotting and bone health. Potassium, is an essential mineral may improve heart health. Folate, or Vitamin B9 has a variety of functions in your body. Adequate folate intake is very important during pregnancy. Red Pepper Amount: 54.7 mcg.

  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Carbs: 6 grams
  • Sugar: 4.2 grams
  • Fiber: 2.1 grams
  • Fat: 0.3 grams

Celery- 95% water

Celery is very low in calories and carbohydrate. One medium stalk contains a mere 6 calories and 1.2 grams of carbohydrate. Half of the carbohydrate content in celery comes from fiber, making it a good source of fiber. One stalk of celery has a minimal amount of protein, with less than one-third of a gram per serving.

Cucumber- 96-97% water

There are just 16 calories in a cup of cucumber with its peel (15 without). You will get about 4 percent of your daily potassium, 3 percent of your daily fiber and 4 percent of your daily vitamin C. They also provide small amounts of vitamin K, vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, manganese and vitamin A.

Last, not least, my favorite...….

Watermelon- 92-94% water

Watermelon is delicious and refreshing, with tons of nutritious seeds. Even though most people spit them out, that is often a big mistake. And don't worry, unlike what you believed as a kid, if you swallow these seeds you will not grow a watermelon in your stomach.

Watermelon seeds come from the watermelon plant, which grows on the vine. The seeds come in two main colors, white and black, which are the immature (white) and fully developed (black) seeds respectively. Both seeds are good for you, however the black ones are more rich in nutrients and antioxidants. So if you have to choose, black seeds over white, or just both, there are hundreds in a watermelon.

Little fun fact that not many know. Watermelon seeds are pack with high levels of protein and amino acids. About 60% of your daily requirements can come from 1 cup of dried watermelon seeds. These seeds also have high levels of Vitamin B, as well as magnesium, zinc, copped, potassium, copper, manganese, and iron. Also, a diverse rang of fats, such as omega 3, omega 6 fatty acids, and smaller saturated fats. The nutrient density also comes along with a high-calorie count – a cup of dried watermelon seeds contains roughly 600 calories.

There are plenty of other health benefits to Watermelons seeds. Another surprisingly fun fact about watermelon seeds is, it's ability to boost hair health (growth, strong, prevent breakage, or split ends), support your skin (moisturize, wrinkles, skin elasticity, acne), increase energy, lower blood pressure, stimulate digestion, regulate blood sugar, and lower cholesterol levels. I am about to blow your mind with more benefits from eating these little black seeds everyone would always spit out. These seeds can also help with growth and development of your body's cells and tissues. Since they are packed with protein, which is composed of amino acids, this helps with the production of these tissues. Last, these seeds can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, growth and repair of various organ systems, boost fertility, increase energy levels, lower blood pressure, and improve nerve system function.

Now if ALL those health benefits don't make you get up to go buy a watermelon, then good luck this summer !




H-Town Run Tourist's Guide to Mental Health

Terry Hershey Park: My place of solace

Author's own.

Jovan Abernathy is an international marathoner and owner of Houston Tourism Gym. To claim your free tour, contact her at info@tourismgymhtx.com. Follow her on Twitter @jovanabernathy. Instagram @TourismGymHtx. Facebook @TourismGymHtx


When I need a serious reset, I jump in the car and and go to that parking lot under Beltway 8 and Memorial. I get my headphones, and my phone and just start walking. I'm talking about Terry Hershey Park. This out and back trail of about 12.5 miles has been my place of solace. This is the place where I began my journey into fitness. This is the place that brought me out of depression. I have used the rolling hills of Terry Hershey Park to train for my races, and I still come here to chill the f*** out. This is why:

Breathe in the beauty.

Author's own

There is beauty all around.

Terry Hershey Park is situated along Buffalo Bayou. There are all these trees that are overgrown with vines. It looks like a rainforest. It's like the trees befriended a vine and the vine showed them up. I don't know who is winning in this relationship. I think we are because it is beautiful. See how I just had this weird conversation in my head. Guess what I wasn't thinking about. The bad breakup I went through 5 years ago. Terry Hershey is also great during bluebonnet season. Many people visit to strike a nature pose. You can also use one of the many dedicated benches to reflect on your beautiful surroundings.

Shh! Keep quiet or you will scare them.

Author's own

The wildlife is abundant.

I really get a kick out of counting the different wildlife that I encounter. While preparing for the article, I tried to find all the insects, birds, and mammals that you will see in Terry Hershey. Too many to name so I will tell you my favorite stories.

This week, I saw 5 rabbits, some squirrels, a cardinal, lots of butterflies, a turtle, egrets and herons. There have been many times that I have seen 30 turtles just sunbathing. They are really scared of people so you have to be quiet or they duck back into the water. One time, I was running and almost ran into a huge spider hanging from its silk. I stopped to take pictures, but it wasn't having it. I waved bye-bye as it crawled up it's silk. I have also encountered poisonous snakes, but luckily, I saw them before they saw me. I can't help it, I'm a wildlife voyeur.

Walking or running, you get a great workout.

Author's own.

You can train for challenging races.

Terry Hershey Park is a great place to train. As I stated before, you have 12.5 miles of trails to work with. Whether you are a walker, runner, biker, or canoeing is your thing, this is your place to train. There are some of the best hills in Houston here making it a challenge. There are different trails with different difficulty levels. If you are training for a trail race, you can take the more difficult unpaved trails which are great to work those supporting tendons. You can also get off the beaten path that is across the bayou that will really test you. Honestly, I still don't know how to get on it.

Worth the 4 mile run.

Author's own.

Personal Experience

You have probably gotten that this park is dear to me. Let me tell you about some of the fun times that I have had on it. I call it "fun with myself." Not like that. Brace yourself, This is silly. When you have moments like these, you just have to give yourself over to them. I was listening to classical music while running. All of a sudden a song from the Last of the Mohicans comes on. It was so dramatic, I felt like I was running across a meadow or the frontier. Every turn felt new. I really felt alive and guess what? I was actually running across a meadow because that is what Terry Hershey looks like. I never forgot it. But, you know what I did forget? The fact that my car needs yet a new tire and oil change.

If you are new to Houston, want some hill training, or just need to relax, do not hesitate to get on the Beltway. Exit Briar Forest and park in the parking lot just underneath. It will lead you to mental health heaven.

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